Review of INDIE Ebook Last Dragon Standing – Book 5 of the Heartstriker series by Rachel Aaron #Brainfluffbookreview #LastDragonStandingbookreview

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I have thoroughly enjoyed this series – see my reviews of Nice Dragons Finish Last and One Good Dragon Deserves Another, No Good Dragon Goes Unpunished and my mini-review of A Dragon of a Different Colour. So last year I decided to get over myself and make an effort to complete more series, as I often delay finishing them.

BLURB: There is no way to write a blurb for this final book without spoiling all of the others. Suffice it to say, mysteries resolve, dragons war, pigeons abound, and Julius must risk himself in ways he never dreamed possible as Bob’s grand plan finally comes to fruition.

But the Great Seer of the Heartstrikers isn’t the only one whose schemes are nearing completion. The Nameless End is coming, and even the machinations of the world’s most brilliant dragon seer might not be enough to stop it. As the world comes crashing down, it’s up Julius to prove what he’s always known: that seers can be wrong, and Nice Dragons don’t always finish last.

REVIEW: The fourth book, A Dragon of a Different Color, essentially sets up the story for the final apocalyptic conflict that takes place throughout the whole of this story – so whatever you do, don’t pick up this one without at least having read that book. Better still, start at the beginning of this series. While there are series you can crash midway and get away with it, this isn’t one of them, as many of the story threads and allusions relate to previous books.

This book deals with the ultimate struggle that has been foreseen by Bob, the dragon seer and The Nameless End. I love the fact that Aaron took her time in lining up all the main characters we’ve got to know and love, to ensure that no one was left dangling. I love the fact that she took time to fully unpack the potential consequences of what would happen if it all went wrong. I also love the fact that in amongst all the apocalyptic events, there are still regular shafts of humour and plenty of snark and chat. After all, this is one of the staple tropes in Urban Fantasy, and is often the aspect that goes out of the window when the action starts to really run hot.

I thought the pacing and the complexity of the magic system was cleverly explored and fully utilised during this final showdown – something else I thoroughly appreciated. I am often disappointed when really cool concepts get rather buried as people start flinging gouts of magic at each other – not so, here. Those concepts and the premise set out within the worldbuilding become part of the weaponry used, which made reading this book an ongoing joy. It isn’t particularly long, but that didn’t matter, because it packs a punch from the first page to the last and gave me the opportunity to see each character’s narrative arc come to a fitting conclusion.

This is one of my favourite urban fantasy series – and I loved the way Aaron brought it safely home. Highly recommended for fans of quirky dragon stories with an interesting, detailed magic system.
10/10

11 responses »

  1. I liked the first book in this series and to this day I regret not having found the time to move forward because the “dragon society” depicted in the book and the core idea of dragons with human form were nothing short of fascinating. On the other hand, it’s good to know that the series keeps its promises until the very end, and it’s a further encouragement for me to… keep the faith 🙂
    Thanks for sharing!!

  2. You and your dragons, girl! I LOVE Castellian,and I just finished ,last night, a re-read of The Wind in the Door by Madeline L’Engle where Charles Wallace tells Meg there are dragons in the garden. Turns out, it is a cherubim named Progo. This is book two of the Murry Quintet. I am re-reading everything L’Engle for a personal “project”. Now, SHE is MY kind of sci-fi!

    • I don’t blame you! I try very hard not to produce any spoilers, but sometimes the odd detail gets through that might compromise your reading experience – and with a series as good as this one, that would be a real shame.

    • This is one of my favourite urban fantasy series – it’s generally different and there are all sorts of really clever flourishes slipped in amongst the action, snark and romance…

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